The story begins in
2000, when the Japanese action figure company KAIYODO teamed up with anime
merchandiser MOVIC to produce a high quality set of gumball prize figures
based on AKAMATSU KEN'S super popular manga / anime LOVE HINA. The result
was the K&M WATERLINE HINA series. The first line featured all 5 of
the Hina girls in bust-like, half body figures scupted to seem as if they
were partly submerged in water.
series was popular enough for K&M to try again in 2001, with the
WATERLINE series 2. They continued the theme of a partly
"submerged" sculpt, and the theme of this 2nd round was
time the series has a few extra enhancements. The heads were now all
created around the same format of construction: 3 pieces: face, hair
and the back of the head, would all snap together on almost
universally compatible ball joints at the neck, allowing some
interchangeability. It also spawned a much easier variant. By means
of just an extra face piece, you could create 3 versions of Shinobu
and 2 of Mutsumi.
announced that they were to team up with the Japanese toy
manufacturer Epoch to continue the Waterline series by creating
full-bodied, fully compatible toys. Kaiyodo would provide sculpting,
and Epoch the manufacturing. The collaborative effort was called the
HINA SKYLUV PROJECT"
The project is divided into 3 parts,
and 7 figures. In order of their scheduled releases:
#1. Narusegawa Naru
#2. Aoyama Motoko
#3. Konno Mitsune (Kitsune)
#4. Maehara Shinobu
#5. Otohime Mutsumi
#6. Kaolla Suu and Sarah McDougle (2 pack)
They're scheduled to be released 2 at a
time. So far #1 -#4 have been released. Each piece contains 1 semi-poseable
figure (how poseable they are varies individually) and a wide assortment
of relevant accessories. Japanese retail price is 2490yen each. #6
will be the exception; slightly more expensive, but it will include full
figures of both Kaolla and Sarah.
Each figure has one common feature: The
ball jointed neck and the 3 part interchangeable head that is fully
compatible with the Waterline 2 series (Note: Waterline 1 is not
compatible!). You can basically swap entire heads, faces and hairstyles.
for some fun, check out the PHOTOSHOOT to see
some examples of what can be done! Over 80 pictures in the gallery!
Or click on any of the portraits below
(Actually the backing card of the packaging. Cool, huh?) for my review.